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Old 23rd July 2014, 22:34   #1366
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Originally Posted by DerAlte View Post
In plain English - Vindaloo. When I was a kid, a Bong relative's pronunciation of this used to conjure up an image of Bhindi Aloo in my mind. The original was Vinha d' Alhos in Portuguese: Vinha - wine (vinegar, really), for the acidity, and Alhos - garlic, for flavor.
Right. But the problem is, Vindaloo now a days isn't really what it should be. Even my mother doesn't soak meat in vinegar. She just cooks meat with vinegar and a masala made with blended onion, plenty garlic, red chilli, sugar and cumin.

I, on the other hand, soak meat for long hours. I omit the sugar too.

Forgot to mention: mom adds ginger to the masala. I don't.

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Old 24th July 2014, 12:29   #1367
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Oats & Bottle Gourd Dumplings
I found the recipe here: http://www.quaker.co.in/recipe/quake...rd-dumplings/5
My recipe however had the following changes:
I used only grated bottle gourd, with toasted Oats, sooji, chopped coriander and garlic.
I steamed the dumplings for some 8 mins. Then instead of a tadka, I toasted them on a hot tawa.
It turned out very tasty and incredibly light. Even my one year old loved it.





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Originally Posted by dre@ms View Post
[*]How do one make soft chappathi's. The chappathi's we make used to be soft when immediately consumed, but when the same is packed for lunch, it becomes hard. We have tried all tips and tricks available in the net to no avail. As of now resorted to add more oil so it doesn't become hard.
My wife mixes yoghurt instead of oil. The rotis stay soft even though we prepare them at 8 PM and eat them at 3:30 AM. (Ramzan Seheri)



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[*]We are becoming health conscious so moving from Sunflower to Rice Bran oil and vice versa.[/list]
  • How is this Olive oil, I see tins and tins of olive oil's stored in supermarkets.
  • So which is good and for what all purposes we can use it.
  • Will it replace the sun flower/rice bran oil (daily cooking)?
My wife came up with an incredible idea.
Beside our stove we have these beautiful carafes with different oils.
Mustard Oil, Extra Virgin Olive Oil, Sesame Oil, Sunflower or Rice Bran Oil, Almond oil.
Reminds me that I need to get some peanut oil.

We also use clarified butter.

I personally feel that a variety of oils is better than a single one. Having said that I don't think olive oil pomace is any better than regular sunflower oil.
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Old 24th July 2014, 14:05   #1368
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... How do one make soft chappathi's. The chappathi's we make used to be soft when immediately consumed, but when the same is packed for lunch, it becomes hard. ...
You mean crumbly (cracks easily) or hard (crisp like papad)?

* If it is crumbly, roll the chappatis in a tea towel, in a closed box so that it doesn't dry out. You can use alu foil or plastic cling wrap instead of cloth. The objective is to prevent moisture from escaping

* If it is hard, the dough is on the dry side. Add more water while kneading the dough, and rest the dough for at least 10-15 min before making chappaties

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Originally Posted by dre@ms View Post
... We are becoming health conscious so moving from Sunflower to Rice Bran oil and vice versa.
  • How is this Olive oil, I see tins and tins of olive oil's stored in supermarkets.
  • So which is good and for what all purposes we can use it.
  • Will it replace the sun flower/rice bran oil (daily cooking)?
Olive oil is quite confusing, what with the plethora of brands and 4 different grades: Extra Virgin, Virgin, plain OO, and Pomace. Flavor also decreases in the same order. Rates vary from 425/ltr (Aro, MetroC&C) for Pomace, till 1500+ for EVOO.

There is an additional doubt regarding purity, since there are many Italian (or Italian sounding) brands which have been mixing upto 70% cheaper neutral oils (like soyabean etc.) to good olive oil. Avoid brands like Borges, Fillipo Berio etc. - they are priced less, and for a good reason. Check on the net, there are reports about brands which sell dubious EVOO.

Olive Oil has 2 disadvantages:
1. It has a low smoking point, and is rather unsuitable for Indian cooking.
2. If not kept in a dark container, it oxidizes and becomes rancid very fast

As long as you are not heating the oil beyond smoking point, and use oil in moderation, you will be fine. EVOO should never be used for frying. Use only for sprinkling from top on salads, pasta, pizza etc. For frying, use the cheaper plain OO.

Sunflower is cheap pressed-seed oil - nothing wrong with it. Ignore advertising woo-woo, especially for Rice Bran oil. At the end of the day, if one has an active life-style, the type of oil doesn't matter. Remember, people in villages use butter and ghee - yet they don't suffer from heart or cholestrol problems. Save your money, and wisely use it elsewhere.

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Originally Posted by rohanjf View Post
... doesn't soak meat in vinegar. She just cooks meat with vinegar and a masala made with blended onion, plenty garlic, red chilli, sugar and cumin. ... mom adds ginger to the masala. I don't.
The objective of the natural vinegar like cider or grape vinegar (not the acetic acid based synthetic vinegar) was tenderization of meat with the marinade, and killing off organisms that could make the dish spoil easily. Ginger & onion pastes do the same.

Alas, people nowadays put synthetic vinegar assuming the objective was to add acidity to the dish.

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Originally Posted by bblost View Post
... My wife came up with an incredible idea.
Beside our stove we have these beautiful carafes with different oils. ...
Reminds me that I need to get some peanut oil. ...
Hope you are using opaque carafes for storing the oil. Light deteriorates oils very fast.

Raw peanut oil is actually quite healthy, as healthy as mustard oil. Someone wrote somewhere that all the other oils which are extracted with an alcohol based process, like Rice Bran and other exotic ones, are now being promoted for health benefits while none actually exist, or are at best dubious. This is just commercial exploitation since such raw materials used to be a waste earlier, and with health benefit publicity the oil companies are just making good money (all of them are costlier than oil obtained by pressing seeds) out of nothing - excellent margins.

You should actually try making flavored oils - like garlic oil, chilly oil, walnut and chilly oil, etc. Start with EVOO, and soak the additive for some time in it. Adds delicate flavor without masking the original flavors.
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Old 24th July 2014, 14:10   #1369
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Originally Posted by DerAlte View Post
Hope you are using opaque carafes for storing the oil. Light deteriorates oils very fast.
These carafes are all approx 200 ml in size.

The sesame oil is in a slightly larger but covered carafe.
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Old 24th July 2014, 14:16   #1370
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Originally Posted by dre@ms View Post
How do one make soft chappathi's. The chappathi's we make used to be soft when immediately consumed, but when the same is packed for lunch, it becomes hard.
Keep the tawa on high flame while making the chappathis.

If cooked slowly on low flame, the chappathis will become hard.

Rohan
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Old 24th July 2014, 14:28   #1371
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Originally Posted by DerAlte View Post

The objective of the natural vinegar like cider or grape vinegar (not the acetic acid based synthetic vinegar) was tenderization of meat with the marinade, and killing off organisms that could make the dish spoil easily. Ginger & onion pastes do the same.
What about wine-vinegar? Does it tenderize? Last time I marinated chicken (country) with wine-vinegar, the chicken turned hard. Am not sure whether it was due to the vinegar or due to the cooking process. It was a seared kind of dish
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Old 24th July 2014, 14:39   #1372
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Originally Posted by bblost View Post
My wife mixes yoghurt instead of oil. The rotis stay soft even though we prepare them at 8 PM and eat them at 3:30 AM. (Ramzan Seheri)
So while kneading use Yoghurt instead of Oil. Right?
Can we add oil when in tawa or make phulkas?

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Originally Posted by bblost View Post
I personally feel that a variety of oils is better than a single one. Having said that I don't think olive oil pomace is any better than regular sunflower oil.
Even I have read elsewhere that we shouldn't be sticking to one particular variety of oil and keep changing it. Whatever we use, don't find any difference in the taste.

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Originally Posted by DerAlte View Post
You mean crumbly (cracks easily) or hard (crisp like papad)?

* If it is crumbly, roll the chappatis in a tea towel, in a closed box so that it doesn't dry out. You can use alu foil or plastic cling wrap instead of cloth. The objective is to prevent moisture from escaping
Yes, but not that crumbly. So can we use aluminium foil to wrap and preserver moisture.

Quote:
Originally Posted by DerAlte View Post
Olive oil is quite confusing, what with the plethora of brands and 4 different grades: Extra Virgin, Virgin, plain OO, and Pomace. Flavor also decreases in the same order. Rates vary from 425/ltr (Aro, MetroC&C) for Pomace, till 1500+ for EVOO.

There is an additional doubt regarding purity, since there are many Italian (or Italian sounding) brands which have been mixing upto 70% cheaper neutral oils (like soyabean etc.) to good olive oil. Avoid brands like Borges, Fillipo Berio etc. - they are priced less, and for a good reason. Check on the net, there are reports about brands which sell dubious EVOO.

Olive Oil has 2 disadvantages:
1. It has a low smoking point, and is rather unsuitable for Indian cooking.
2. If not kept in a dark container, it oxidizes and becomes rancid very fast

As long as you are not heating the oil beyond smoking point, and use oil in moderation, you will be fine. EVOO should never be used for frying. Use only for sprinkling from top on salads, pasta, pizza etc. For frying, use the cheaper plain OO.
Out of your explanation, we find no reason to use Olive oil. Its striked out of my grocery list right away.

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Originally Posted by DerAlte View Post
Sunflower is cheap pressed-seed oil - nothing wrong with it. Ignore advertising woo-woo, especially for Rice Bran oil. At the end of the day, if one has an active life-style, the type of oil doesn't matter. Remember, people in villages use butter and ghee - yet they don't suffer from heart or cholestrol problems. Save your money, and wisely use it elsewhere.
As mentioned above, we don't find any difference in the taste of food, but can find a difference in the color/opacity of the oil. Will shuffle between rice bran and sunflower.

Quote:
Originally Posted by rohan_iitr View Post
Keep the tawa on high flame while making the chappathis.

If cooked slowly on low flame, the chappathis will become hard.

Rohan
Same like making poori. Point noted.

Hope using all this tips and tricks I would be able to gulp in some good soft chappathi's very soon.
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Old 25th July 2014, 08:50   #1373
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To make it brown and yet not burn it, soak a handful of beaten rice and channa dal (kadalai parippu), grind to a paste and add it to the shop-bought batter. Don't know the chemistry, but that is how hotel guys get crisp brown dosai.
Thank you so much for the suggestion! It worked wonders.

We prepared the kadala parippu powder by grinding it on a mixer grinder and stored it in a container. Added a tablespoon worth powder into the batter (6 dosas) and it turned out to be super crispy with the ghee. Tasted kickass with the sambar we had prepared!

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Old 25th July 2014, 14:08   #1374
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Originally Posted by mallumowgli View Post
... Last time I marinated chicken (country) with wine-vinegar, the chicken turned hard. Am not sure whether it was due to the vinegar or due to the cooking process. It was a seared kind of dish
Propbably cooked too long. Start to finish, marinated (tenderized) chicken won't take more than 10 minutes to cook on high heat, and that includes the searing. Remember, it continues to cook even after taking off the heat.

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Originally Posted by dre@ms View Post
... Can we add oil when in tawa or make phulkas? ...
Nooooo. It would be a paratha if you add oil.

Phulka comes from the Hindi word for swelling: phoolna. The objective is to cook it dry, fast enough that the outside seals fast and then the steam generated inside makes the phulka swell. Can be done directly on gas, or by pressing the roti softly on the tawa itself with a cloth ball.

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Originally Posted by dre@ms View Post
... Yes, but not that crumbly. So can we use aluminium foil to wrap and preserver moisture. ...
Sure. You could also coat the phulkas with a bit of ghee or butter on one side. I put ghee on one, put another phulka on top, and rub them together till both are coated. Don't worry about cholesterol - a small amount of ghee / butter in diet is good for the body.

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Originally Posted by Gannu_1 View Post
Thank you so much for the suggestion! It worked wonders.
... Tasted kickass with the sambar we had prepared! ...
Super! Your sambar looks pretty mild, though.
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Old 25th July 2014, 14:49   #1375
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Nooooo. It would be a paratha if you add oil.
You are mistaken. I was not asking if I can add oil to phulkas
I asked when we knead the batter with yoghurt instead of oil, can we add oil when making chappathi.

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Originally Posted by DerAlte View Post
Sure. You could also coat the phulkas with a bit of ghee or butter on one side. I put ghee on one, put another phulka on top, and rub them together till both are coated. Don't worry about cholesterol - a small amount of ghee / butter in diet is good for the body.
We know how to make phulkas and will definitely try this trick.
Have instructed() wifey about how to make soft chapathi and from next week it is going to be my lunch. Wish us good luck
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Old 25th July 2014, 15:07   #1376
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... I asked when we knead the batter with yoghurt instead of oil, can we add oil when making chappathi. ...
Sorry, got confused with the language. "Can" - anyone can, there is nothing physical that prevents it. "Should" is the question. For north Indians (even I am one, though I live in south India), oil = paratha, not roti / chapati / phulka - which are all dry roasted, and ghee / butter added if needed.

My wife, who is south Indian, would always add a bit of oil (she says the quantity of oil I use to cook a dish, she uses in one month) to make rotis / chappaties soft - till long time back I showed her how to make soft phulkas. Bent a thick GI wire into a tool with which she could safely roast it on open flame. But, old habits die hard. Secret to a happy married life: compromise formula. I always get chappati - paratha actually - with oil for lunch (she doesn't like dry phulka, and doesn't want to add ghee / butter), and dry phulkas for dinner (she eats rice).

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... Have instructed() wifey ... Wish us good luck
All the best!
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Old 25th July 2014, 16:14   #1377
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Your sambar looks pretty mild, though.
Oh no! My roomie's sambar tastes brilliant, lip smacking good. There is a difference in the sambar prepared by folks in Kerala and Tamilnadu. This is his recipe:

Quote:
1. Rinse and soak toor dal for 15 mins. 50 to 60 grams is sufficient for 4 people.
2. Cook it in pressure cooker along with one or two tomatoes (depends on person) and half tbsp oil. 5 whistles are enough in full flame on smaller burner.
3. Let it cool slowly in the cooker with the whistle left on it.
4. In the meantime start slicing onions, cutting vegetables (personal preference). I prefer slicing the onions in semicircular pattern. Also soak some tamarind with water in a separate vessel.
5. Once sufficiently cooled (max. 10 mins), mash the dal to a paste. Mash the cooked tomato separately and mix with the dal paste.
6. Add 2/3 tbsp oil and let it heat in kadai/vessel. Add mustard, cumin seeds and let them sputter.
7. Quickly add onions and garlic and let it sauté to golden colour. Add a pinch of asefoedita powder (personal preference).
8. Add curry leaves and let leave it till it produce the fragrance. Add the cut vegetables and let it semi-sauté along with onions.
9. Add the mashed tomato and dal paste. Add water as required, don’t make it too watery. The thicker the mixture the better the taste.
10. Add salt and sambhar powder (Aachi/MTR/homemade) to taste. 1-1.5 bsp of sambhar power is sufficient. Add less in the beginning and stir it properly. Taste it before adding both salt and sambhar powder.
11. Let the mixture boil till the vegetables are cooked. Add the tamarind paste to taste.
12. Add coriander leaves. Let it boil for another 5 mins and pour it into a vessel. Keep the vessel closed with a lid. It helps in slightly uncooked vegetable cook while you make rice or sides.
Tastes better than the sambar cooked by my mom/sister/fiancee.

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Originally Posted by DerAlte View Post
Bent a thick GI wire into a tool with which she could safely roast it on open flame.
Reminded me of the Havells ad:


Last edited by Gannu_1 : 25th July 2014 at 16:18.
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Old 25th July 2014, 16:31   #1378
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... Tastes better than the sambar cooked by my mom/sister/fiancee. ...
Have you seen the Kamal Hasan classic Michael Madana Kama Rajan? He is a Palakkad Iyer 'cooku'! If you haven't you must - to know about tasty Sambar!

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Originally Posted by Gannu_1 View Post
... Reminded me of the Havells ad: ...
Eggjhackly (they must have stolen my idea )! Of course, what I made was a spiral about 8" wide, and a handle loop - 3mm GI wire. It is still used every day, even after 30 years.
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Old 25th July 2014, 20:45   #1379
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Recently, I tried making Scrambled Eggs the proper way.

Finally it turned out well. Here are the steps I followed.

1. Take a pan, I used a tea pan rather than a sauce pan, heat it mildly.
2. Put about 2 table spoons of butter in the pan
3. The moment they turn into liquid, break in 3 eggs (I use brown eggs)
4. Remember to keep the heat on medium low
5. Use a small wooden spatula to whisk the eggs
6. Keep whisking the eggs for 30 secs
7. Add a pinch of salt and 2 tbsp of cheese cream
8. For about a 2 minutes keep whisking the eggs - and the moment it turns even slightly hard, turn off the heat and keep whisking
9. When the egg is about 90% done, stop whisking it, add ground pepper
10. After 30 secs your scrambled eggs are ready - enjoy it with garlic bread.

The important point with eggs are to never ever overcook it and keep whisking it in the pan, never before it.

Suggestions if any are welcome!
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Old 25th July 2014, 21:32   #1380
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Guys please suggest some oat recipes for breakfast other than oat with milk (porridge).
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